Rank or Title
Date of Birth
Date of Death
17 Mar 1918
Media files and documents
War time / or Pre War occupation
Place of Birth
World War I Address
Place of Death
Soldier or Civilian
Horace Battams was born in Luton in 1895.
In 1911 he was 16 years old, working as a builder's labourer & living with his family at 51 Hartley Road, Luton. His father William was a straw plait bleacher. He was the eldest of 7 children. Arthur 12, Winifred 10 & 8 year old Percy were at school & Lilley 6, Willie 4, & 1 year old John were at home with their mother Agnes.
Horace was determined to enlist in the Army & do his bit when war broke out, but he tried & was rejected 5 times. He was born with Nystagmus, a condition of the eye that causes involuntary movement & he also had damage to the optic nerve. He made his contribution to the war effort as his trade at the time was a bottler & he worked at a munitions factory.
In March 1916 Horace married Alice Cooper.
Horace's persistence finally paid off because on 7th June 1917 he was accepted into the Labour Corps.
His pension record describes him as 5ft 5 inches tall, with a fresh complexion, grey eyes & dark hair. He had a scar on his right wrist.
He was sent to France on 5th August 1917 & served 3 months there until 30th November 1917 when he was sent home to 350 Hitchin Road suffering from pains in the head & problems with his eyes. He was discharged from the army on 11th February 1918.
Sadly Horace died on 17th March 1918. He is buried in the cemetery on Crawley Green Road.